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The Clear Guide to a Publisher's Web Site Step 3 in Developing a Web Site

© 2004 Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D.

Before you consider the design for your Web site, the graphics, the navigation, or the colors, you should decide on your goal.

Do you want to sell books, sell artwork, generate calls for editing services, give the media a place to retrieve information, give meeting planners a reason to book you as a speaker, or generate demand for your book?

Decide on one main focus for your site. When you know exactly what you want the site visitors to do, then you can start to develop the pages necessary to reach your goal. You'll develop and organize the content of the site to deliver the necessary information. Then you'll find a way to make it easy for the visitor to help you to achieve your goal. Here are four sample goals:

Goal = Make Sales

The Web site will make it easy to find the each product. Then it will explain the product benefits & features and give visitors a reason to buy. Finally, the site will funnel visitors directly to the sales page.

Goal = Develop Media Relations

The Web site will be packed with the information required by the media, and the site will offer the important graphics in several different resolutions to suit individual media requirements. Every page will lead the visitor to the information he needs from you.

Goal = Generate Calls for Services

The Web site will clarify why the site owner's services are highly desirable and why those services should be engaged immediately. Every page will include contact information to encourage the visitor to contact you right away.

Goal = Display Art in Online Gallery

Every page will display the talent of the artist. The site will include several movies or slide show tours of the available art, information about recent and future gallery shows, plus background information on the artist.

Yes, your goal dictates both the content of your site and the text you use to display that content. As soon as you've clarified your goal, you can systematically gather or generate the content you need. When you have your content, you can start plotting out the most sensible way to present that content to Web site visitors.

Next month: step four in developing a business Web site, identifying the target market. The target market will determine the general presentation style you’ll use to achieve your goal

~ Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D. publishes both in print and online. Contact her at virginia@spawn.org

 

 

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